Recent Research : Mind - Brain - Behavior ...
(Top Posts - Science - 122202)

... results from genes-stimuli-exsperiences and probabilities
based on a milieu of activities, a relatively small amount of
which one is cognizant of or in any way in control of, as well
as random non-determinable activity being an integral part
of the nature of the mind, brain, and behavior ...

... helpful resources, including recent research:

New Research Adds To Understanding
Of Conscious Awareness
Two new studies shed new light on the brain mechanisms
underlying conscious awareness. These findings are con-
sistent with a role for the thalamus and upper brainstem in
conscious mechanisms. ...

Different Parts Of The Brain Handle Fantasy And Reality
The ability to recognize objects in the real world is handled
by different parts of the brain than those that allow us to
imagine what the world is like. There are parts of our brain
that are involved in our ability to imagine the world. The
question is, 'Are those the same as the parts of the brain
that we use to know what things are?' And the answer ap-
pears to be, 'No, they are not.' ...

Psychologists Draw An "Architecture Of Attention,"
Outlining Three Brain-Based Building Blocks
Neuropsychologists have mapped different aspects of
attention to different parts of the brain's frontal lobes.
In particular, problems in screening out irrelevant infor-
mation seem to be based in the frontal lobes' right side.
This research joins mounting scientific evidence that
attention is a complex, multi-faceted brain-based pro-
cess. ...

Humans May Not Be As Aggressive
And Competitive As Thought
Is it human nature to be competitive? Aggressive? Violent?
Popular and scientific literature says yes. An anthropologist
who studies primate behavior says no. Affiliated behavior
-- friendly behavior like grooming and playing -- is probably
a hundred times more frequent than aggressive behavior
in primates, and that aggressive behavior constitutes less
than 1 percent of primates' activities. ...

Study Associates Differences In Mood
With Activity In A Specific Area Of The Brain
Are you moody? If so, then there is a small area near the
front of your brain -- an inch or two behind your right eye
(if you are right handed) -- that is probably working over-
time. This is one of the first times we've seen direct evi-
dence of an association with a specific brain region. The
most striking positive correlation we found was localized
in only one small region of the brain, the ventromedial
prefrontal cortex. Since the time of the ancient Greeks,
there has been speculation that the brain is the basis of
personality, but it is only within the last 20 years that sci-
entists have developed instruments capable of measur-
ing brain activity with enough accuracy to address this
question directly. ...

Neuroscientists Searching For Roots Of Empathy
Find Brain Regions Involved In Learning By Imitation
A team of social-cognitive neuroscientists have identi-
fied a network of brain regions that are involved in human
imitation and specific brain areas that enable a person to
distinguish the self from others. The research is part of
a larger effort to find the neurological basis of social
interaction, particularly empathy, a basic part of human
nature that allows most, but not all, people to care about
others. This work is important because imitation is a
natural procedure. We don't learn to imitate. It is part
of our biological nature and we are born to imitate. ...

Perception Is Stored In Single Neurons
Perception is something that must be learned. As we rec-
ognize things in our environment we gather experience
and this experience in turn colours our perception. This is
nothing new, of course. But brain researchers are going
one step further to ask how different kinds of information
are integrated in the brain and what principles govern how
perceived objects are represented there. Scientists have
carried out experiments that prove for the first time that
single nerve cells in the brain are responsible for control-
ling our perception by drawing on prior experience. ...

The Biology Of Induced Memory
In 2000, Dr. Karim Nader discovered that a fear memory
induced in a rat and reactivated after 1 -12 days of storage
in the outer part of the brain could be eradicated with a
shot of anisomycin, a protein-synthesis inhibitor. ...

"Here's Looking At You" Has New Meaning:
Eye Contact Shown To Affect Conversation
Patterns, Group Problem-Solving Ability
Noting that the eyes have long been described as mirrors
of the soul, a Queen's computer scientist is studying the
effect of eye gaze on conversation and the implications
for new-age technologies, ranging from video conferencing
to speech recognition systems. ...

In Disasters, Panic Is Rare; Altruism Dominates
Group panic and irrational behavior did not occur at the
World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. Instead
the event created a sense of "we-ness" among those
threatened. ...

Emory Brain Imaging Studies Reveal
Biological Basis For Human Cooperation
Functional MRI scans have revealed a "biologically em-
bedded" basis for altruistic behavior, with several charac-
teristic regions of the brain being activated when players
of a game called "Prisoner's Dilemma" decide to trust
each other and cooperate, rather than betray each other
for immediate gain. ...

Researchers Discover Gene That
Controls Ability To Learn Fear
Researchers have discovered the first genetic component
of a biochemical pathway in the brain that governs the in-
delible imprinting of fear-related experiences in memory. ...

Gene May Bias Amygdala Response To Frightful Faces
The amygdala, the brain structure known as the hub of fear,
responds differently to pictures of scary faces, depending
on which version of a gene one has inherited. ...

New Theory Explains Economic Growth
In Terms Of Evolutionary Biology
It took an evolutionary leap in the human species to help
trigger the change from centuries of economic stagnation
to a state of sustained economic growth, according to the
first theory that integrates evolutionary biology and eco-
nomics. ...

Study Suggests That Tomboys
May Be Born, Not Made
Levels of testosterone during pregnancy appear to influence
the gender-role behavior of preschool girls, according to a
new study. ...

People From Distant Lands Have Strikingly
Similar Genetic Traits, Study Reveals
Scientists have long recognized that, despite physical
differences, all human populations are genetically similar
to one another. But a new study in the journal Science
concludes that populations from different parts of the
world share even more genetic similarities than had
previously been assumed. ...

Researchers Explain How The Brain Integrates
Head Position And Acoustics
The slightest turn of the head can significantly change
the way a person or animal detects sound. A subtle tilt
alters the angle at which high-frequency sound waves
hit the ear, providing cues to localize the sound. To
use those cues, the brain must put what it hears into
the context of the position of the head. ...

Melodies In Your Mind: Researchers
Map Brain Areas That Process Tunes
Researchers at Dartmouth are getting closer to under-
standing how some melodies have a tendency to stick
in your head or why hearing a particular song can bring
back a high school dance. They have found and mapped
the area in your brain that processes and tracks music.
It's a place that's also active during reasoning and ...

Songbirds Use Mental Pointer When Playing Tunes
That spontaneous serenade from the zebra finch is not
only more rehearsed than cellist Yo-Yo Ma's chamber
music, but the bird even keeps its "finger" on its mental
sheet music both day and night. Researchers have dis-
covered that signals serving as "mental pointers" are
produced in the brains of zebra finches while they sing,
and also while they dream about, or "rehearse," their
song during sleep. ...

The Eyes Have It: Study Shows Infants More
Tuned Into Wider World Than Previously Believed
Adults often believe infants are off in their own world, but
a new study indicates they are more tuned into the wider
world and what the people around them are doing than
previously thought. ...

Researchers Identify Decision-Making Area Of The Brain
New research has provided the first neuro-imaging evi-
dence that the brain's frontal lobes play a critical role in
planning and choosing actions. The research team has
found that a small region in the frontal lobe of the human
brain is selectively activated when an individual intends
to make a particular action and not another. ...

Insight Into How The Body Tells Time
Nearly all living things have a natural rhythm that influences
their behavior and physiology. This rhythm typically is "cir-
cadian", following a near 24-hour cycle. Driven by an internal
clock, a creature's natural rhythm is synchronized to the out-
side world by external cues, like the sun. Different genes
have been discovered to be essential to the operations of
this clock. ...

Your Brain Is Teaching Your Nose New Tricks
A new study by a team of neuroscientists at the University
of California, Berkeley, has determined that we learn new
smells in an area of our brains, not just in our noses, which
have neural receptors previously thought to be solely re-
sponsible for a person's ability to detect new odors. ...

Movement Without Senses Coded Into Neurons
An animal's ability to move - like the kicking of a developing
baby or the crawling and walking of insects - is intrinsic, not
dependent on sensory stimulation. ...

Researchers Demonstrate Direct,
Real-Time Brain Control Of Computer Cursor
It is the stuff of science fiction: Researchers at Brown Uni-
versity have used a tiny array of electrodes to record, inter-
pret and reconstruct the brain activity that controls hand
movement - and they have demonstrated that thoughts
alone can move a cursor across a computer screen to
hit a target. ...

Thought-Controlled Prosthetics?
The long-sought ability to control the movement of pros-
thetic limbs with brain waves has edged a little closer to
reality. In experiments, monkeys were able to move balls
around in 3D space on a computer screen just by thinking
about it. With a little practice, they ...

Individual Neurons Reveal Complexity
Of Memory Within The Brain
An investigation of the activity of individual human nerve cells
during the act of memory indicates that the brain's nerve cells
are even more specialized than many people think -- no pun
intended. Although nerve cells that change activity during the
use of memory are widely distributed in the brain, individual
neurons generally respond to specific aspects of memory.
At this point, the research is helping to illuminate the vast
mysteries of the human brain. ...

UMass Researcher Finds Most People
Lie In Everyday Conversation
Most people lie in everyday conversation when they are
trying to appear likable and competent. ...

Evidence Behind Claim Of Religion-Health
Link Is Shaky, Researchers Say
Popular claims that religious activity provides health ben-
efits have virtually no grounding in the medical literature,
according to an article in the March issue of the Annals
of Behavioral Medicine. This conclusion sharply contra-
dicts assertions that a large body of evidence indicates
that religious people enjoy better physical and mental
health. ...

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